I write about this because it's hard for me to say it out loud. I've never lost someone, unless you consider the loss of my favorite tejano singer a loss, but I just thought, “aww, that sucks”. While I speak of it in a joking kinda way, I've never had to deal with this type of pain or emptiness. I've lost my friend of 17 years, and while some may think, it's just a dog, she was with me through the the most important years of my life; from elementary school to getting married and more.
She was the princess type of dog who didn't take the foot of the bed, but instead preferred my pillow. I watched her tear up the flower garden, and give birth on my favorite pjs, but still I loved her. After a long weekend away, Erik would dream of coming back to sleep in his own bed, and I was most excited about seeing my dogs.
No matter what was going on that day, she was always excited to see me, and even through the worst and loneliest times in life, she'd always inspire at least a little giggle in me. At 9 yrs old, I never imagined this friendship would come to an end, but as we both grew older her brain, eyes and heart started to deteriorate. I always thought she would probably go in her sleep but she was raised in a stubborn family after all. I realized that keeping her alive just to be with her a bit longer was selfish of me. So, as I felt her heart and breathing slow down, slowly drifting into her deepest sleep, I tearfully told her, “Thank you Suzzie”. I thanked her for her loyalty and friendship, I thanked her for growing up with me and teaching me responsibility. I thanked her for letting me hug and love on her when I needed. I thanked her for letting me play with her hair, tie it in a bow and chop it up however I wanted. I thanked her for making me feel safe at night, and I thanked her for the inexplicable feeling of loving something other than a human.
I can't say I'll miss the high-pitched bark that would startle me as I started to fall asleep, or that she’d stare at me shamelessly while I sat on the lady throne. I also won't miss how she'd mark her property on MY property to make it ours. I'll miss the ordinary and mundane things in our everyday routine like watching her as I brushed my teeth, or mixing all her medications into her food because she'd always find a way to eat everything in the bowl except the medicine.
Shortly before she slipped away, I kissed her on her stinky head and said “goodnight suzzie,” like I do every night.
I'll miss you, my friend.